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Winter sports federations pleased with their visits to Beijing

2014-11-21 15:04:00 Xinhuanet

BEIJING, Nov. 21 (Xinhua) -- Seven International Federations for winter sports have completed their fact-finding visits to Beijing, which is bidding to host the 2022 Winter Olympics with Zhangjiakou, and are pleased with what they found.

The International Biathlon Union (IBU), the last group of visitors, ended their trip this week to the Chongli County in the Zhangjiakou area, which would be the site of the snow events.

After a field inspection on the snowy slopes, Nicole Resh, Secretary General of the IBU, and Borut Nunar, Race Director World Cup, said that the site planned for the Beijing 2022 biathlon center fully meet the requirements to develop venues and facilities to host the biathlon events.

The IBU's visit marked the end of a series of seven International Federations' field trips, which were successfully hosted since the end of August, ahead of the submission of the Beijing 2022 Candidature File to the IOC in January 2015.

The International Federations which visited Beijing are: the IBU, the International Ski Federation (FIS), the International Skating Union (ISU), the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), the World Curling Federation (WCF), the International Bobsleigh and Tobogganing Federation (FIBT) and the International Luge Federation (FIL).

All the delegations visited Yanqing, Beijing and Zhangjiakou, Hebei Province, to have a first-hand look at the sites where the Olympic and Paralympic competitions would be held if Beijing was to win the rights to host the 2022 Games.

All seven delegations were pleased with their visits and provided useful advice to the Beijing 2022 Bid Committee. To date, four International Federations have delivered venues certifications to the Bid Committee.

"I am very pleased with what we found; it reflects what we saw on the maps. It is a very promising terrain with a lot of potential - it needs some modifications here and there but overall it looks very good," said Uwe Beier, FIS Snowboard Race Director. "As far as hosting the Olympic Winter Games is concerned, this is a clear 'yes'. It is actually a very good location and a very good terrain."

Joseph Fitzgerald, FIS Freestyle Coordinator, added:"We work very hard on the design of our competition courses to create a stadium-like atmosphere, a big show and create a big historical moment. I believe that this is a very good design for this."

Speaking to media following the IBU field trip, Borut Nunar, IBU Race Director World Cup, said that he was impressed by the site. He enhanced that the natural environment was pleasant, with good air quality and a clear view, and that the venues were planned to be built in close proximity to each other. He concluded saying that having experienced snowy weather in Zhangjiakou, he believed that snow conditions would not be an issue during the Games.

Nicole Resh, Secretary General of the IBU, added that the IBU would be willing to offer more advice on site planning and venue construction if Beijing was to host the 2022 Olympic Winter Games.

Beijing 2022 is vying to host Games that will prioritize athletes' needs and will be designed in a sustainable and cost-effective way. The International Olympic Committee will elect the 2022 host city at the 128th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on July 31, 2015.

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